Sorry for the long post, but concerning all the talk of White Rastas - Question: True (or for lack of a better word "original" or "fundamentalist") Rasta must believe in and/or be the following:
1) Jah is the ONE and ONLY GOD. Jah created all things. Jah always was, always is, and always will be. Jah has no beginning and No end. Jah is all Love, Perfect love. All praise to Jah, all love through Jah. Jah is Compassionate, understanding and forgiving. InI goal in life is to Love all Jah Idren as we would love ourselves, and do unto ohers as InI would have done to you. None are perfect as Jah, but the Rasta goal is to live as holy a life as is Humanly possible, Praise Jah and ask forgiveness for our human shortcomings, and show our holiness by InI treatment of others.
2) Rastas believe in affirming the divinity of His Imperial Majesty Haile Selassie I, that is they believe H.I.M. is Christ reincarnated. Rastas reject the Babylonian hypocrisy of the modern church. The church of Rome, and even the council of Rome, are considered to be particularly Babylonian. Interestingly, Haile Selassie I was one of the few blacks who introduced Christianity to Ethiopia, and was against people thinking of him as the reincarnation of Christ.
3) Of Black or Ifrican (broadly speaking) descent. Yesus was a black man, black man/women are the chosen people and non-blacks are therefore inferior. Rastafarians acknowledge that their religion is the blending of the PUREST forms of both Judaism and Christianity; they also promote the Egyptian (Egypt at the time being much of present day Africa) origins of both these religions. The ancient Greeks, Romans & Europeons basterdized the religion by portraying Yesus with "white" features to suit their own ends.
4) Rastas believe in a set of dietary and hygienic laws that were formulated to accompany the religion's doctrine. They urge their flocks to shun the ingestion of alcohol, tobacco, all meat (especially pork), as well as shellfish, scaleless fish, snails, predatory and scavenger species of marine life, and many common seasonings like salt. In short, anything that was not "ital," a Rasta term meaning pure, natural or clean, was forbidden.
5) Marijuana (ganga) is regarded as "wisdomweed," and Rasta leaders urged that it be smoked as a religious rite, alleging that it was found growing on the grave of King Solomon and citing biblical passages, such as Psalms 104:14, to attest to its sacramental properties: "He causeth the grass to grow for the cattle, and herb for the service of man, that he may bring forth food out of the earth."
6) Rastas also outlawed was the combing or cutting of hair, citing the holy directive in Leviticus 21:5: "They shall not make baldness upon their head, neither shall they shave off the corner of their beard, nor make any cuttings in their flesh."
7) Rastas believe in repatriation to mother Ifrica. Rastas deny allegations by other relgious groups that they were antiwhite or antibrown (mulatto) and invited all to repent and accept Jah . They vow that at a secret hour known only to a devout few, converts would return to Ethiopia by an undisclosed means, leaving behind the tropical steambath of Jamaica, which they consider to be literally Hell on Earth. Until that time, Rastas would refuse to take part in the machinations of daily life and commerce in "Babylon," the sphere of temporal captivity of the spirit.
8) Traditional Rastafari have very set ideas about how girls and womyn were to function as Rastas, and how they were to be treated by men. Rasta dawtas are raised to be good wives and mothers. They learn how to cook, clean, raise children, and other such tasks. They are warned against having abortions or taking birth control pills. They also learn such restrictions as not cooking f ood while they menstruate. Traditional Sistren must dress according much like the orthodox Jewish and Muslim womyn; with long, unrevealing dresses, and with their heads covered. From Deuteronomy 22:5: The woman shall not wear that which pertaineth unto a man, neither shall a man put on a woman's garment.
Rastas believe that a womon is thus less likely to be disrespected. Indeed, much can be said for the religions such as Rastafari, Islam and Judaism, in which womyn are covered in the presence of men. As a result, men cannot place value judgements on a w omon's appearance, and she in turn does not feel pressured to look any certain way, and does not have to fear public harassment or humiliation. The result of this lack of stress on a womon's appearance is none of the sisters or daughters of Rastafari seemed to foster the jealousy, competition, or negative in-fighting which prevail among women in Western cultures, who have predominantly been socialized to believe that their worth lies in competing for and catching a man. Rasta women don't feel that they'll have, or not have, a man because of the way they look. They rely on the fact that they'll have a man because of who they are, how they conduct themselves. Though highly critical of the traditional sexism of Rastamen, the sistren are better off than their western counterparts. To be sure, Rastamen need to be liberated from the myths about women and the vestiges of inequality in the family, but in their day-to-day life they decry the impoverished condition of a Babylonian culture where sexual alienation and the pornography industry of the capitalist countries have turned orgasms into a commodity. Rasta women are part of the resistance to the powerful tendencies of capitalism to shape women into mindless consumers.
If all of this is true, then white's can't be Rastas. If InI believe everything else, but am white, then by definition, I am not a Rasta. If InI am Black, and follow all the other beliefs, but do not believe that H.I.M. is the son of Jah (yesus) reincarnated, then by strict definition, I am not a Rasta. If InI am Black and believe in the Divinity of H.I.M. Haille Salisse I, but don't believe in Repatriation, I am not a Rasta. Seen?
Does it matter what my Label is?
If I am a good man, honor Jah, Love Jah and my brethren and sistren as InI, do good works for my fellow Idren,
If InI a total vegan, no meat, milk, etc. no killing, tread lightly on mother earth,
If InI believe Yesus was an Ethiopian MAN like H.I.M., (obviously if He & HIM from Ethiopa He & HIM could not be white) a holy and wise man, a prophet, and a "saint" but Not the son of God,
If InI believe the Bible is the word of Jah, but as recorded by men and therefore subject to metaphors or misunderstanding (not inerrant),
But InI not black (Albanian) and don't smoke herb (any more, health problems), What am I????
And as InI said, should the label matter to the brethren & sistren Rastas. If it bothers so many, or so many feel the need for a label maybe Albanian I-merican Rasta is as close as InI going to get to one.
One Love, One Destiny. One Earth One Chance! Symbiosis. Respects to all from InI Albanian I-merican Rasta.
FAIR USE NOTICE:
This site may at times contain copyrighted material the use of which has not always been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. We are making such material available in our efforts to advance understanding of environmental, political, human rights, economic, democracy, scientific, and social justice issues, etc. We believe this constitutes a 'fair use' of any such copyrighted material as provided for in section 107 of the US Copyright Law. If you wish to use copyrighted material from this site for purposes of your own that go beyond 'fair use', you must obtain permission from the copyright owner.
For more information go to: http://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/17/107.shtml